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definition - O-Zone

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O-Zone performing at their final concert at the Golden Deer (Cerbul de Aur) musical festival in Romania. (September 2005)
From left to right: Arsenie Todiraş, Dan Bălan, Radu Sîrbu
Background information
Origin Chişinău, Moldova
Genres Pop, Eurodance, electronica
Years active 1998–2005
Labels Cat (Romania)
T.I.M.E. (Italy)
Ultra Records (US)
Avex Trax (Japan)
Mushroom Records (Australia, former)
Website artists.universal-music.de/ozone
Past members
Dan Bălan
Petru Jelihovschi
Radu Sîrbu
Arsenie Todiraş

O-Zone was a Moldovan[1] pop music trio that was active from 1998 to 2005 and consisted of Dan Bălan, Radu Sîrbu, and Arsenie Todiraş. The group gained global popularity with their song "Dragostea din tei" and their subsequent album DiscO-Zone.



  1998–2001: Formation and early years

O-Zone was formed as a duo of Dan Bălan and Petru Jelihovschi in 1998.[2] They released their first album, Dar, unde eşti..., in 1999. However, Jelihovschi had not intended to make music his career, so he split from Bălan. Undaunted, Bălan held open auditions for new band members. At one such audition, he met Arsenie "Arsenium" Todiraş, who eventually won over the initially skeptical Bălan with his version of Elvis Presley's "Love Me Tender." Bălan and Arsenium would have proceeded as a duo act until Bălan received a call from Radu Sîrbu, who wanted a chance to audition for the group. Despite missing the auditions the first time around, Bălan agreed, and after a successful audition by Sîrbu, O-Zone officially became a trio.

  2002–2004: Rise to success

In 2002, O-Zone moved from Chişinău to Romania, hoping to gain more recognition. There, the group became an instant hit band with their upbeat song "Despre tine" ("About you"), which held the top position on the Romanian Top 100 chart for three weeks in February 2003. Their second hit, which brought them worldwide attention, was "Dragostea din tei", translated roughly as "Love in the Linden Tree." It quickly became popular in Romania, where it also topped the Romanian singles chart for four weeks in September 2003, but faded from popularity by the end of 2003.[3] But the song gained popularity in Italy when the little-known duo Haiducii released a cover of "Dragostea din tei", which topped the Italian pop charts.[3] Arsenie Todiraş later said that at the time, while it was not illegal, the group's cover felt like a betrayal because Haiducii had not asked permission to make a cover.[3] However, the cover's success led to curiosity about the original artist, and led to Time Records, an Italian recording house, offering O-Zone a one-year contract.[3] Soon after the song's release in Italy, it was also released in various other countries in Europe under Polydor Records and became an instant hit.[3]

"Dragostea din tei" topped the singles charts of nearly a dozen European countries in 2004. It reached the top 10 in many other countries, including in the United Kingdom, where it reached the third position on the singles chart.[4] The re-release of "Despre Tine" in 2004 from the same album had similar success across Europe.

In contrast to their multi-platinum status in Europe, O-Zone never entered the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in the United States,[5] although it did reach the 14th position on the Hot Dance Airplay chart.[6] The viral video Numa Numa Dance helped to slightly boost awareness of "Dragostea din tei" in the United States,[7] but while the song received moderate to major airplay, most Americans knew it simply as the "Numa Numa Song" and never knew the name of the original song or the group that performed it. "Dragostea din tei" was sampled in the song "Live Your Life" by T.I. and Rihanna, which topped the Billboard Hot 100 in late 2008.[8]

  2005–2006: Disbandment and Japanese success

On January 13, 2005, while still very popular, the members of O-Zone announced their disbandment,[2] citing personal reasons.[9] Their last European concert was held at the 2005 Golden Deer music festival in Romania.[10]

Also in 2005, the Japanese music label Avex Trax gained distribution rights for O-Zone music in Japan, and released the album DiscO-Zone in August 2005 in that country.[6] The album, which features the song "Dragostea din tei", became immensely successful in Japan. Topping the Oricon albums charts, it reached over 800,000 in sales in 2005 alone and became the 12th most popular album of 2005.[11] Partially because the album was re-released twice by Avex Trax, DiscO-Zone charted for over a year on the Oricon weekly albums chart[12] and sold over one million copies overall.[13]



Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales thresholds)
1999 Dar, unde eşti...
2002 Number 1
2004 DiscO-Zone 15 9 3 15 16 1 41 3 5 1 7 Gold (CZ)[6]

Gold (FR)[24]
3× Platinum (JA)[25]
Platinum (POR)[26]
Gold (SWI)[27]

"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory.


Year Single Peak chart positions Certifications
2002 "Numai tu"  ?
"Despre tine" 1
2004 "Dragostea din tei" 1 2 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 17 1 1 1 1 3 1 3 Platinum (AUT)[34]

Gold (BE)[35]
Gold (DE)[36]
Diamond (FR)[37]
2× Platinum (GE)[38]
Platinum (NL)[39]
2× Platinum (NOR)[40]
Gold (SWE)[41]
Platinum (SWI)[27]

2004 "Despre tine" (re-release) 4 35 9 4  ? 14 2 9 8 27 1 19 7 9 Gold (FR)[42]
"De ce plang chitarele" 17
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

  Other singles

Year Single JA Peak
2005 "Koi no Maiahi" 72
"—" denotes releases that were not released in that territory.


  1. ^ "O-zone, a successful band". http://www.artline.ro/O_zone__a_successful_band-16682-2-n.html. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  2. ^ a b "Radu si Arsenie de la O-Zone vor ca trupa sa se reuneasca" (in Romanian). http://www.ziaruldeiasi.ro/mozaic/radu-si-arsenie-de-la-o-zone-vor-ca-trupa-sa-se-reuneasca~ni4a4q. Retrieved 2010-06-07. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "Romania/Moldova: O-Zone Breathes Fresh Air Into European Pop Music Scene - Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty". Radio Free Europe. http://www.rferl.org/content/article/1052664.html. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  4. ^ ""Dragostea din tei" by O-Zone, in various singles charts". Acharts.us. http://acharts.us/song/1600. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  5. ^ "O-Zone Album & Song Chart History | Billboard.com". Billboard. http://www.billboard.com/#/artist/the-o-zone/chart-history/279717. Retrieved 2010-06-02. 
  6. ^ a b c "O-Zone Japanese Official Website" (in Japanese). Avex Marketing. http://maiahi.com/index.html. Retrieved 2010-05-03. 
  7. ^ "Internet Fame Is Cruel Mistress for a Dancer of the Numa Numa". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/learning/teachers/featured_articles/20050228monday.html. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  8. ^ "T.I. feat. Rihanna's Live Your Life sample of O-Zone's Dragostea Din Tei". WhoSampled. http://www.whosampled.com/sample/view/274/T.I.%20feat.%20Rihanna-Live%20Your%20Life_O-Zone-Dragostea%20Din%20Tei/. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  9. ^ "Cultural Roundup". SETimes. http://www.setimes.com/cocoon/setimes/xhtml/en_GB/features/setimes/roundup/2005/01/19/roundup-03. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  10. ^ "O-Zone's Last Concert During "The Golden Deer" Festival Was A Huge Success". Spotlightning News. http://www.spotlightingnews.com/article.php?news=420. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  11. ^ "2005年 年間アルバムチャート-ORICON STYLE ミュージック (2005 Japanese End of Year Chart)" (in Japanese). Oricon. http://www.oricon.co.jp/music/special/051219_01_2.html. Retrieved 2010-06-02. 
  12. ^ "O-ZONEのCD・DVDリリース情報、O-ZONEのプロフィールならオリコン芸能人事典-ORICON STYLE" (in Japanese). Oricon. http://www.oricon.co.jp/prof/artist/347987/products/release/. Retrieved 2010-05-31. 
  13. ^ "Biography - Dan Balan Official Website". http://danbalan.com/en/1/3/biography.htm. Retrieved 2010-06-03. [dead link]
  14. ^ a b "Discographie O-Zone - austriancharts.at" (in German). Hung Medien. http://austriancharts.at/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  15. ^ a b "danishcharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Danish). Hung Medien. http://danishcharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  16. ^ a b "finnishcharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Finnish). Hung Medien. http://finnishcharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  17. ^ a b "lescharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in French). Hung Medien. http://lescharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  18. ^ a b "O-zone - Disco-zone - Music Charts". http://acharts.us/album/17866. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  19. ^ a b "O-ZONEのCD・DVDリリース情報、O-ZONEのプロフィールならオリコン芸能人事典-ORICON STYLE" (in Japanese). ORICON STYLE. Oricon. http://www.oricon.co.jp/prof/artist/347987/products/release/. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  20. ^ a b "dutchcharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. http://dutchcharts.nl/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  21. ^ a b "norwegiancharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Norwegian). Hung Medien. http://norwegiancharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  22. ^ "portuguesecharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Portuguese). Hung Medien. http://portuguesecharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  23. ^ a b "hitparade.ch - Discography O-Zone" (in German). Hung Medien. http://hitparade.ch/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  24. ^ "2008 French certifications" (in French). Snep. http://www.disqueenfrance.com/fr/page-259165.xml?year=2004&type=8. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  25. ^ "September 2005 Japanese certifications" (in Japanese). RIAJ. http://www.riaj.or.jp/data/others/gold/200509.html. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  26. ^ "Portuguese certifications" (in French). Fanofmusic. http://fanofmusic.free.fr/Charts_Portugal.php?page=Portugal_M_Q. Retrieved 2010-07-09. [dead link]
  27. ^ a b "2004 Swiss certifications" (in German). Swisscharts. http://swisscharts.com/awards.asp?year=2004. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  28. ^ a b "ultratop.be - Discography O-Zone". Ultratop/Hung Medien. http://www.ultratop.be/en/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  29. ^ "Blunt Maintains Pole-Position On Euro Chart | Mediterranean > France from AllBusiness.com". http://www.allbusiness.com/retail-trade/miscellaneous-retail-retail-stores-not/4383881-1.html. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  30. ^ a b c "O-zone - Music Charts". acharts. http://acharts.us/performer/ozone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  31. ^ "italiancharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Italian). Hung Medien. http://italiancharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  32. ^ "spanishcharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Spanish). Hung Medien. http://spanishcharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  33. ^ "swedishcharts.com - Discography O-Zone" (in Swedish). Hung Medien. http://swedishcharts.com/showinterpret.asp?interpret=O-Zone. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  34. ^ "Austrian certifications". ifpi.at. http://www.ifpi.at/?section=goldplatin. Retrieved 2008-04-20. 
  35. ^ "Belgian certifications". Ultratop.be. http://www.ultratop.be/fr/weekchart.asp?year=2004&date=20040529&cat=s. Retrieved 2008-04-19. 
  36. ^ "Danish certifications". ifpi.dk. http://www.ifpi.dk/index.php?pk_menu=50. Retrieved 2008-09-20. 
  37. ^ "French certifications". Disqueenfrance.com. http://www.disqueenfrance.com/fr/monopage.xml?id=259165&year=2004&type=10. Retrieved 2008-04-19. 
  38. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (O-Zone; 'Dragostea Din Tei')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. http://www.musikindustrie.de/gold_platin_datenbank/?action=suche&strTitel=Dragostea+Din+Tei&strInterpret=O-Zone&strTtArt=alle&strAwards=unchecked. Retrieved 2008-04-20. 
  39. ^ "Dutch certifications". nvpi.nl. http://www.nvpi.nl/nvpi/pagina.asp?pagkey=60461#resultaat. Retrieved 2008-12-09. 
  40. ^ "O-Zone Official Japanese Website - International Sales Information". Avex Group. http://maiahi.com/index.html. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 
  41. ^ "Swedish certifications". Ifpi.se. http://d12753932.u160.foretag.surftown.se/wp-content/uploads/ar-20041.pdf. Retrieved 2008-09-20. [dead link]
  42. ^ "2008 French singles certifications" (in French). Snep. http://www.disqueenfrance.com/fr/monopage.xml?id=259165&year=2004&type=7. Retrieved 2010-07-09. 

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